Soaring Free

Sara Blau
Creative 2020 / Finalists


In an age when so many grapple with the dark side of human emotions, even to the extent of addiction and suicide ideation, it is crucial to address it head on. When pain is overwhelming it can be tempting to want an escape in any manner, including the ultimate escape. But these negative thoughts and feelings are only the tip of the iceberg. When one digs deeper, there is a soul crying out for connection to G-d and other people. There is a soul searching for the secret to true happiness.

[Disclaimer: If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts or feelings, please consult with a qualified mental health professional. The intent is to give a deeper perspective to complement the mental and emotional work one is doing.]

In the Mamor of Vayihiyu Chayei Sara, the Rebbe discusses how serving Hashem with joy is fundamental. There were three people who sincerely tried to attain the level of serving Hashem with simcha, but two were missing key ingredients.

Chava tried to achieve simcha, but she was lacking a crucial piece, bittul. True simcha cannot be tainted with the passions and desires of the self. She indulged in her intense desire for knowledge. A Jew cannot have true simcha and serve hashem if his end goal is his own desires. Unfortunately, her mistake resulted in the discovery and perpetual feeling of ego for mankind, the uncomfortable sense of self awareness. The ego causes chaos, intensity, drags a person down. The intensity is expressed in the attached poem.

Noach tried to rectify her mistake. He thought he could have simcha, and at the same time get rid of the ego and self-awareness, with the bittul of wine, nullifying his intellect and emotions. But numbing his self-awareness was not the solution, and he too was missing true bittul. The actions of both Chava and Noach had negative repercussions.

Sara discovered the secret to true simcha; true bittul. Not a bittul of destroying her sense of self, but by subjugating herself to a Higher Power. She nullified her desires, elevating them to what Hashem wants. She experienced true and revealed joy, and at the same time was able to be present and in touch with the opportunities Hashem presented her with. The peace of the soul is expressed in the attached poem, and stands in contrast to the intensity of the ego.

The ability to be able to transcend ourselves is an inheritance we all have access to, as “Maseh Avos Siman Libanim.” May we all be able to tap into true joy by transcending our egos and fulfilling the very purpose of our creation, and may our simcha and bittul lead to coming of Moshiach now.

Based on תורת מנחם – ספר המאמרים מלוקט ויהיו ח יי שרה תשמ” א

Soaring Free


Know this:
When you feel
Like you don’t want to feel
When the bottle or injection
The escape
Is calling

When you want a black out
A trip to a higher world

Where you don’t feel pain
Anxiety, depression, or stress
Where you don’t feel
A world where you don’t exist
You, or anyone else

When they warn you
That you’re destroying yourself
And you think
That is what I’m trying to do
To destroy
This niggling
Throbbing pain

One more sip
And then one more
Deeper into the abyss

When you don’t see any
Other than yourself
You are alone
No one cares

You cower
Under secrecy

When you feel
You are broken
Damaged goods

When you want to escape reality
The here and now

Know this:

It is the nature of the human condition
The existential struggle
This desire for a release
It thrives in secrecy

When you feel
Like there’s no choice but death

Know this:

This is not the death
You crave

You crave
The annihilation of ego
Relief from the pain
From the storms
Of self absorption

It all started when
On a misguided quest
For knowledge
For pleasure
For happiness
Chava ate the fruit
And knew ego
The pain of feeling self
The excruciating
Constant awareness
Of self
You feel it too

And so

You seek to distract
Act out
Every variety
Where is my next fix

The fix
Lasts just a minute
A flood of endorphins
And then the hole
The gaping hole
Is left vulnerable as ever

Noach tried too
To escape with the bottle
To transcend
To get out of himself
Inner happiness
It didn’t work

Know this:

The only chance to sustain
Is not to destroy self
But to transcend it

Not with drinks
Not with food
Not with drugs
Not with views

Transcend your own desires
And live for something higher

Like Sara
She was humble

Not the “step on” variety
She was not a doormat
She was strong enough to
Send out a child for the sake of another

Yet she had bittul
She transcended herself
She connected to something
Higher than herself
Her mission

Step into life
Your soul no longer trapped by the ego

There is a reason you are alive.
Find it

Spread out your wings
Your love of G-d
Your awe of G-d

Fill your spiritual thirst
Find that reason to live
To give
To others
To experience
A sense beyond you

Your soul knows
What it needs
Feed it
Let it sing
Give it space to express

Your soul knows
What it is needed for
There is an opportunity
In the here and now

Still the noise!
Clear the clutter
Spend the time
The silence
To Listen

Let your light shine deep, direct
Don’t let it fracture or twist
Shine it straight
It’s perfect
No shame

Uncover your face
Step down from the pedestal Embrace

Reach out
Open your arms
We are in this together

Your soul is thirsty
Let us in
Let God in

Stop clenching your fist
Let go of the self
You will feel the peace
Your soul will thank you

And know this:

Those voices, they lie
You don’t want to end it all
You are only just beginning

Choose life!!!